Hi all! My name is Braden Turner, and I am a recent graduate of the University of Georgia (May 2019). I majored in English and minored in Linguistics, and in the fall, I will be pursuing higher education in Atlanta. I am fascinated with poetics and poetic theory, 19th-century Romantic literature/poetry, and the relationship between linguistics and the modern poetic form. Some other things I love to read and research are queer theory, astronomy, game design, art, the languages of South America, and the rising development of video game narrative as a medium of interactive literature.
In my academic career at UGA, I became intrigued by the idea of the anthology in the 19th-century. The way poems and bits of writing were excerpted, re-titled, reformatted—these occurrences altered the way the public both perceived and received said writing. In my research here, I will be looking at poetry and forms of commercial writing appearing online or on the computer (fiction, non-fiction, flash form, etc.) and researching where and how these pieces appear may affect their individual perception. In addition to this, I also find the way modern linguistics is incorporated into modern writing compelling, and how formatting for an online medium might take away from authenticity in print.
Bibliography for Project:
LeGette, Casie. Remaking Romanticism: The Radical Politics of the Excerpt. Springer International Publishing, 2018.
The first source actually contains multiple in and of itself; Remaking Romanticism: The Radical Politics of the Excerpt written by Dr. Casie LeGette (an esteemed UGA professor of English) examines and deconstructs the ways in which Romantic poetry was stripped, divided, and utilized within the anthology-culture that was the most widespread means of literature access in the 19th century. This anthology gives an insight to a few very foundational questions this research poses: how can poems change over time? What effect does this have on their interpretation? To what degree do they differ from their original manuscript, and why? Is the difference in interpretation due to cultural atmospheres or tangible differences?
In the preface to the book—which could be read as a source by itself—LeGette breaks down the politics and purpose behind reshaping poetry, focusing in on a few poets from the Romantic period in Britain. Notably, she discusses the recurrence of Romantic poets Wordsworth and Coleridge having poems excerpted, edited, and altered to find solace in a variety of literary outlets at the time, whereas Lord Byron’s poems were not as often butchered out of authenticity due to his works being more appeasable in the public eye.
This sort of treatment can be used as small-scale evidence in regards to a broader, more overarching practice over time that has been applied to poetry. What is the history of these changes, and why should they matter?
Legette, Casie. “Reanimating Caleb Williams; or, How to Keep the 1790s Alive.” Remaking Romanticism, 2017, pp. 19–63., doi:10.1007/978-3-319-46929-4_2.
As mentioned before, many of the essays from this book approaches the culture of amending, altering, and editing poems and their respective excerpts—this one focuses not on the poetic, but the literature of the time. Essentially, it details the complex nature of why such pieces of text are focused on historically—and here, we see LeGette showing the sharing of Godwin’s novel Caleb Williams as a means to preserve a place in time.
To argue this is the sole reason works such as this were altered and redistributed would be an exercise in failure. However, LeGette does show that there are many layers to the changes that poems undergo over time, and their excerpts’ existences can be deconstructed when approached from the correct angles of perspective.
Legette, Casie. “From Citation to Recitation: Shelley’s ‘Men of England.’” Remaking Romanticism, 2017, pp. 167–212., doi:10.1007/978-3-319-46929-4_5.
This essay, among a few different things, tries to hone in on the poem “Men of England” by Percy Shelley and examine how and why it was changed, altered, but yet, commonly recited among political unrest. Similar to how LeGette treats the novel Caleb Williams, Shelley’s poem is approached from a cultural, historical, and political angle. She writes of admonishment among scholars regarding the academic purpose of his works and this specific poem’s place among them, while simultaneously examing the path of existence of “Men of England.”
This essay is another great example of how history and even politics can cause disruption or lasting flavoring to be cast upon a poem—and the effects these types of natures can have on the poem centuries later.
Legette, Casie. “The Past Jumps Up: Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Southey.” Remaking Romanticism, 2017, pp. 65–116., doi:10.1007/978-3-319-46929-4_3.
In this chapter of her book, LeGette touches on the ideas revolving around the reasons poems by selected authors were often used, excerpted, and thus, altered. The opening of the chapter explains that editors often harnessed their ability to commit what would now be considered copyright, in order to advance their own political motives. Editors at the time were free to excerpt and alter poems to their liking in order to fit their dialogue in whatever anthology they were choosing to construct. This often led to frameworks previously unassociated with a given poem, creating a whole new, and sometimes radically different, interpretation of a given poem.
Understanding why and how editors did this, and researching the historical implications of such changes, is key to understanding and tracking changes in poems over time. For example, how were Shakespeare’s sonnets utilized in 19th century anthologies? Were they framed in the same way Shakespeare himself wrote and published them? Or have they been implanted into an editorial creation that skews interpretation of the raw art form? This would clearly have an effect on the reading experience—why would the editor desire this to occur? These questions are a way to approach the logic and history of the ways poems have changed over time.
“Poison and the Tyger.” Blake’s ‘Innocence’ and ‘Experience’ Retraced, doi:10.5040/9781472553973.ch014.
This article does historical searching in terms of tracing poems written by Blake, revealing the realizable and tangible changes that occur in his poems, and suggest reasons as to why these exist.
Eliot, T. S. The Use of Poetry and the Use of Criticism: Studies in the Relation of Criticism to Poetry in England. Harvard University Press, 1986.
Eliot himself wrote a meta article on the nature of poetry’s use, the reasons why it’s utilized in times of cultural, political, and societal endeavor. The way these poems were criticized led to difference in interpretation and portrayal by a variety of writers of the time.
Rowland, Ann Weirda, and Maureen N. Mclane. “Romantic Poetry and the Romantic Novel.” The Cambridge Companion to British Romantic Poetry, pp. 117–135., doi:10.1017/ccol9780521862356.007.
This article depicts the act of excerpting and quoting as alteration to the original poem, and how this affects the portrayal of Romantic poetry moving forward into the literary canon.
Omidsalar, Alejandro, et al. “Walt Whitman’s Poetry Reprints and the Study of Nineteenth-Century Literary Circulation.” Walt Whitman Quarterly Review, vol. 35, no. 1, 2017, pp. 1–44., doi:10.13008/0737-0679.2266.
This essay explains the changes among Whitman’s poetry, or at least attempts to do this, and how this relates to the grander ideas of how literature and poetry was circulated within England in the 19th-century.
Deppman, Jed. “Editing Emily Dickinson: The Production of an Author (Review).” The Emily Dickinson Journal, vol. 17, no. 1, 2008, pp. 99–103., doi:10.1353/edj.0.0003.
This article is unique in the fact that it analyzes Emily Dickinson as a figure being purported by her works, as she was not published largely until after her death—so alterations to her poems result in an alteration of her person as a whole to those who read her work.